Baker backs Northeastern nanomanufacturing innovation center

Printed from:

BOSTON – Gov. Charlie Baker is set to join the president of Northeastern University on Tuesday afternoon to announce a new consortium focused on advancing nanomanufacturing and smart sensors with medical, defense and energy applications.

The Advanced Nonomanufacturing Cluster for Smart Sensors and Materials, to be announced at 3 p.m. by Baker and Northeastern President Joseph Aoun, pairs industry leaders with the university to work on new methods to create smart sensors and other materials using “nanoscale” printing processes.

Using the Nanoscale Offset Printing System, a manufacturing technology pioneered by Northeastern that can print sensors and devices more than 1,000 times thinner than a human hair and between 100 and 1,000 times faster than electronic or 3D printing, the consortium will work to advance methods in the field.

Baker and Aoun are scheduled to announce the collaboration between university and industry partners at Northeastern’s Kostas Research Institute for Homeland Security in Burlington. Baker is also expected to tour the research facility.

According to the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, nanomaterials “have the potential to revolutionize the sensing industry” due to their electrical, mechanical and optical properties.

Increased research and development in the nanomaterials field will lead to nanomaterials being incorporated into more commercial products ranging from “high-precision sensors used to monitor premature babies in hospital neonatal units, to devices track water quality, or wearable devices that monitor biometric data,” the collaborative said in a statement.

Pamela Goldberg, the chief executive of the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, Ahmed Busnaina of Northeastern’s department of mechanical and industrial engineering, Northeastern innovation campus vice president David Luzzi and Rogers Corporation vice president of research and development Shawn Williams are also expected to attend Tuesday afternoon’s event.

Earlier in the month, state, federal and university officials announced Massachusetts would be headquarters of a manufacturing institute focusing on textile technology.

Written by Colin A. Young